ASIS General Management Plan
The National Park Service is preparing a new General Management Plan (GMP) for Assateague Island National Seashore. The GMP is a 15-25 year strategic plan intended to provide overall direction for future management of the Seashore, and a framework for managers to use in making decisions about how best to protect park resources, what levels and types of uses are appropriate, what facilities should be developed, and how people should access the park.
In developing the GMP, we have chosen to consider climate change and sea level rise as key factors influencing the future of the seashore. While there is uncertainty about the future pace of climate change and sea level rise, there is near consensus among the scientific community that change is underway. Barrier islands such as Assateague will be especially vulnerable to the effects of climate change and sea level rise, and we must be able to respond effectively. Although major impacts are not expected in the near term, now is the time to set the stage so that future managers have the options available when conditions and circumstances do change.
Based upon extensive internal and external scoping, preliminary alternative management concepts were developed and presented to the public in a series of workshops in August 2011. The management concepts are alternative strategies for how we will go about protecting the National Seashore's resources while continuing to provide high quality recreational opportunities. Using the feedback received, the NPS has refined the alternatives and is now evaluating the impacts of each alternative on the social, cultural, and natural environ¬ment. The refined alternatives and associated environmental impact analysis will be presented to the public for their review and comment in a Draft General Management Plan/Environmental Impact Statement, scheduled for release in fall of 2012.
As the Superintendent of Assateague, I encourage you to take the time to participate in the planning process. With the release of the draft GMP/EIS, there will be another opportunity for public review and comment so stay tuned to our website for updates on the schedule. With your help, I'm confident we can chart a sustainable future for the National Seashore.
Superintendent, Assateague Island National Seashore
Assateague Island National Seashore
7206 National Seashore Lane
Berlin, MD 21811